SL Green resolves lawsuit jeopardizing future of Manhattan skyscraper

SL Green announced that it has reached an agreement on a rezoning lawsuit at One Vanderbilt, “eliminating uncertainty” surrounding the construction of the 58-story commercial tower.

SL Green announced that it has reached an agreement on a rezoning lawsuit at One Vanderbilt, “eliminating uncertainty” surrounding the construction of the 58-story commercial tower. 

The development, approved by the New York City Council and set to exceed the height of the Empire State Building, is backed by a reported $1.5 billion in debt and understood to be carrying a price tag surpassing $3 billion.

A rendering of One Vanderbilt
A rendering of One Vanderbilt

But the owners of nearby Grand Central Terminal, under the name Midtown TDR Ventures, filed a $1.605 billion suit last year claiming that the city and SL Green illegally had deprived them of hundreds-of-millions of dollars worth of air rights.

The settlement allows the construction of the tower — and $220 million in planned transit improvements in and around the area — to move forward “as planned,” according to a statement from SL Green.

“We’re pleased that the new ownership of Midtown TDR Ventures shares our commitment to development in East Midtown and worked with us to quickly reach this agreement, said Marc Holliday, CEO of SL Green. 

“With demolition nearly complete and work already underway on public improvements, One Vanderbilt is well on the way to becoming a reality.”

No monetary figure was placed on the agreement, but TDR, which bought the 102-year-old commuter rail terminal in 2006, had sought $1.13 billion from the city and $475 million from SL Green.

The skyscraper, bounded by Vanderbilt Avenue and Madison Avenue between East 42nd and East 43rd Streets in Manhattan’s East Midtown business district, will be 1,401 ft tall and contain 1.7 million gross sq ft of Class A commercial space. The Empire State Building, one of New York City’s tallest, is 1,250 ft according to the CTBUH

Designed by Kohn Pedersen Fox (KPF), One Vanderbilt’s architecture and building materials pay homage to the landmarked Terminal and the surrounding business district, according to SL Green.